“Pick your favorite shirt...”
... I say as I hand you three shirts - one blue, one green and one yellow.
”Easy,” you say, as you pluck the blue shirt from my hands and start to examine the details, “blue is my favorite color!”
Now we walk into the local shopping mall and I repeat the same request - “Pick your favorite shirt.”
And this time, there's no ”easy” about it. Instead, you stand there, overwhelmed, not even knowing where to begin. And there's a good chance you’ll leave discouraged, without having picked a single shirt.
Overwhelm your clients with choices and, most often, they’ll choose not to make a choice.
As professional photographers, it's our job to learn what our clients love about our work and to narrow down the options we present to them, only showing them the things we believe they will love. By doing this, we’ll avoid overwhelming our clients with too many choices, effectively dropping them into a shopping mall and telling them to pick one favorite item.
There are a two main places we’re notorious for overwhelming our clients:
- We show them entirely too many final photos.
- We inundate them with product types and options.
So what’s a photographer to do? It’s simple, really...
Be the pro.
When you start to “be the pro” and narrow down options for your clients, you get to highlight your expertise as a photographer, your experience as a business owner and the exceptional service you offer to your clients. Here are a few ways to do that:
Show 20-30 Final Photos
When we show our clients a hundred images from a portrait session what we’re really saying is “I don’t know which of these images is actually the best, so I'm making you decide.” Being the pro means we get to go through all of the images, pluck the very best from the bunch, make them shine and put our absolute best face on in front of our clients.
You want to know the best part? When you show fewer images, you sell more prints.
They think we're amazing because they “loved every. single. one of them... how am I going to choose!?!”. It’s hard to make a client love every single photo when you’re showing 100. Show them 100 and they’ll immediately start looking for their one favorite image. Show them the 20-30 absolute best photos and they’ll pull out the ones they don’t love and leave far more they just can’t live without.
Don’t Mention Every Product or Option
This is another big place we overwhelm our clients, and it’s really easy to overcome. Bonus, it makes our business and the service we provide look amazing, as well.
Instead of presenting our clients with a thousand products and their 1.2 million variations (I'm looking at you, Finao), try this:
- Before the session, talk to your client about what they want to do with their photos. Chances are, they haven’t even thought about this yet and it gives you a great opportunity to mention the things you’re known for.
- But before launching into all of your product offerings, talk about the client - what is their interior design style? What are the colors of their walls? Do they prefer classic, ornate furniture over modern, minimalist furniture? What’s their absolute favorite piece of art they already own?
- Take everything you've learned about your client and start omitting products from the things you’ll tell them about. Do they have large leather furniture? Don’t even mention metal prints or acrylics. Instead, tell them about how perfectly your framed prints and canvases will fit in their home. (And carry this into the planning for the actual session... more on that later). Be the pro and talk about all the things they’ll love and leave out the things that aren’t relevant to them, their style and their tastes.